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3D Printing

Makerbot Timelapse

Makerbot Timelapse (Video)

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Since we have a wide array of desktop 3D printers here at SD3D, we decided we would start doing a timelapse series.  Each of these printers have different pros and cons, including their own failure rates.  We recently decided to print a basketball hoop for the office on a Makerbot Replicator 2, and you can see, this occur at 100x normal speed.  This hoop took a total of 1 hour and 6 minutes to print: Read More


ABE Pre-Production Update

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We have been working hard on bringing the first beta ABE units online and felt that an update was in order. Over the past few months, ABE has evolved from being a standalone adaptive build environment into the ideal networking solution for open source 3D printers. This change came about after opening up The Printer Farm to the public and beginning the process of adapting ABE to fit our internal processes. We quickly found that, even with the improved reliability and print quality that ABE provides, a networking solution was imperative for us to handle the complexity of fulfilling production orders with quantities in the thousands on multiple customer owned 3D printers. It was clear that we needed a way to centrally store system specific material settings and to slice from a single source. Our solution was to create a universal wireless 3D printing server by integrating additional computing power and wifi connectivity into the ABE platform. This allows us to access and print on any of the 3D printers in The Printer Farm from anywhere in the world via a secure web browser. Read More

The 3D Print Farm – a professional 3D printer hosting service

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Since our last writing, SD3D has developed a unique new service which we call the 3D Print Farm. This service was developed specifically to lower the cost of large volume 3D printing. The 3D Print Farm is a professional 3D printer hosting service which allows serious makers and startups to focus on bringing their products to market rather than running and maintaining their 3D printer. Instead of spending hours tinkering with your 3D printer, you could be spending that time working on your own business. Let us be your partner for automated 3D Printing as a service.

Our goal with the 3D Print Farm is to help run and maintain your printers and therefore removes the headache of you needing to babysit your printer all day. This allows 3D printer owners to benefit from the low piece costs of owning the printer while having the machine conveniently hosted by professional technicians in an optimized 3D printing environment. By providing regular maintenance and closely monitoring all aspects of the 3D print process, we can optimize uptime. The 3D printers in our 3D Print Farm in San Diego are guaranteed an uptime of 85%+ throughout the membership term. This means that your parts are going to be made quicker and more efficiently while simultaneously improving the print quality.

So how does The 3D Print Farm work?

Simply come in to a local SD3D and meet with a technician. Alternatively, give us a call to discuss the various costs that are associated with the printer hosting service. These costs include standard maintenance such as cleaning nozzles, tensioning belts, lubricating rods and bearings, and everything else that goes into keeping your printer running smoothly.

The average service cost to print a single bed in the 3D Print Farm comes to approximately $5.89 once all these aforementioned costs are factored in. The material for the prints can be either supplied by you or purchased from SD3D based on our current rate schedule, which is $0.035cm3 at time of writing. Therefore, the overall cost for your standard ABS or PLA prints in The 3D Print Farm comes to $5.89 + $0.035cm3. In terms of a real world item, that’s roughly $1.25 per custom iphone case.

How are we capable of operating at such low costs while maintaining a professional level of quality and reliability?

SD3D uses a set of proprietary equipment and lean processes to lower the amount of print failures. This in turn reduces wasted time spent setting up and maintaining the printer. One such piece of equipment which we covered in our last article is ABE. We have worked tirelessly over the last several months developing a universal Adaptive Build Environment. ABE is capable of being installed and removed from just about any desktop 3D printer in a matter of seconds. Therefore, SD3D can accept 3D printers from just about any manufacturer into the 3D print farm while guaranteeing improved print quality and costs through drastically lowering part defects and the necessity to reprint. Parts can be picked up locally in San Diego or shipped just about anywhere else.

Aside from all this, there are additional benefits to The 3D Print Farm. Once a member, you will receive discounts on all of SD3D’s other services. If a part exceeds the capabilities of your printer, we will print it on another printer in the farm at 20% off our standard low prices. Once the membership term is up, we may offer to purchase purchase the 3D printer. This allows you to recoup some of the costs from the initial purchase if you no longer have use for the printer.


If you have any questions or would like more information about joining The Printer Farm, contact us via the information below!

Email: info@SD3D.com

Phone: 619-786-5383

Website: SD3D


Thank you for taking the time to read our article!

The SD3D Printing Team

3D Print Farm

Q1 SD3D Update

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It has been awhile since we have written an article and as such we have so much to talk about. It has been exciting hearing about all the new 3D printing related Kickstarters, including the introduction of new 3D printing materials, and we can’t wait for what we have to show off too. We have been working non-stop this year between printing and consulting, increasing our printing and scanning capabilities, appearing at events as well as releasing the beta to our flagship product, ABE. Read More

3D Printing New Years Resolutions

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SD3D has been a very busy place over the past several months and we are extremely excited about where we are headed in 2014. We have been watching the 3D printing market as closely as anyone and we believe that 2014 will also be a breakout year for the industry. Here is what we are most excited for in 2014:

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Stepper Motor Cooling

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There are several practical reasons why you may want to cool the components inside your 3D printer. The first and most important is to make sure that your printer remains operational and free of maintenance for as long as possible. The most obvious low-hanging fruit for most 3D printers are the stepper motors responsibility for extruding and positioning the model on the x-y planes. These three motors can run so hot that they will burn you if you try to touch their surface platting during a print. While these motors are designed to run hot, there is a limit to how hot you want them to get for prolonged periods. This is where stepper motor cooling comes into play.

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Top 10 Personal 3D Printers

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There are literally hundreds of desktop 3D printers emerging on the market, each with a multitude of variables to consider. This review was restricted to printers that are currently available or scheduled for initial delivery in the 4th quarter of 2013. Additionally, we only included the most valuable product offered from any single manufacturer to help narrow the playing field.  Our quest was to find the top 10 most valuable 3D printing machines available to those looking for a printer by the end of the year. Here is what we found:

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